Sunday, April 17, 2011

This week I have mostly been observing: the demise of X Factor winner Altiyan Childs

It makes me feel dirty , I feel unclean, I feel how I’d imagine a young lady would feel after an ill advised sexual liaison with Kyle Sandilands, but I must, I really must, reluctantly force myself once more  to return for hopefully the final time, to the subject of Australian X Factor winner Altiyan Childs.
There’s no point in complaining about X-Factor anymore, it’s what the general public want after all, and very much like facing up to your own mortality, I faced up to the fact it was an immovable part of popular culture and gave in and watched it last year.
Altiyan Childs was of course the only palatable thing about it. Cheesier than a lump of Brie, the aging, dishevelled rocker displayed a certain amount of underdog charm which proved irresistible to Joe Public.
So Altiyan brought it home and got the contract with Sony. He released the inevitable epically bland ballad ‘Somewhere in the World Tonight’, (the musical equivalent of painting a piece of wood and watching it dry) which was quickly followed by the cash in covers album.
Of course X Factor isn’t about music as an art form; it’s about producing a product, a product that is precision crafted to appeal to as many people who aren’t music fans as possible, it has to be inoffensive, can’t grab your attention, in essence, it should be the perfect gift for mother’s day.
It is therefore crucial that the winner of X Factor must not display anything resembling an X factor.
It seems that Altiyan doesn’t fit the bill though, and his life has definitely not imitated his art, having more sensational plot lines than an episode of Home and Away and Neighbours combined.
He signed with a suspect manager straight after winning the show (who allegedly has a criminal record longer than the extended version of ‘Hotel California’), and shacked up with him and 7 others known as the ‘Altirage’ in a suburban household which was subsequently found to contain a drugs lab,  a large stash of Marijuana and some illegal firearms.
He’s also, despite a platinum selling album, stone broke, engaged to a 19 year old girl he met on Facebook and is currently embroiled in a scandal concerning his alleged dubious relations with a 15 year old female fan.
Without a doubt Altiyans career as an X Factor champion is over, he was just too rock and roll to fit into the X Factor world. (He even trashed a hotel room in Hobart for God’s sake, does it get more rock and roll than that?).
Which begs the question; who at X Factor and Sony were advising him, and more importantly who cares? I would wager they realised that Altiyan was an oddball, that maybe he wouldn’t be as easily manipulated as your standard X Factor automaton, so they just cashed in on the moribund single and covers album and left him to his own devices, knowing his outlandish behaviour would quickly give them reason enough to sever their ties with him.
And what’s more, where in the name of all that is Irish was Altiyans mentor from the show, Ronan Keating?
I’ll tell you where he was, he was too busy to think of Altiyan in his hour of need, he was snuggly situated in his underground lair, wringing the last drops of fetid sour milk from the scabrous teat of the diseased bovine that is Boyzone. Probably. I’m not sure where he was to be honest.
So where does this leave us?
In conclusion:

The X Factor show was a success, and they made their cash from Altiyan.
Altiyan got his 15 minutes of fame and got to act like a rockstar for a few months, which is more than most of us will get. Let’s hope most of the sordid tales about him aren’t true.
And for the rest of us, well, we don’t get anything except the enduring memory of Altiyan Child’s spine tingling live version of ‘Lady in Red’ and the unshakable feeling that the whole sorry enterprise is further evidence of the downfall of western civilisation.
Still, you have to laugh don’t you?

1 comment:

  1. Oh, good ol' Ronan Keating (Sigh). He has a new album out called 'When Ronan met Burt' (which sounds like something from Sesame Street) and you just know it's gonna be cool right?

    Sorry, but I can't comment on Atilla Childs because I don't know who he is....and further apologies for not knowing what X-Factor is either - I'm your typically 'uncultured australian' :o)

    Great post Spod - my weekly laugh!